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Posted October 10, 2011
When I first began to read this book, I was apprehensive about the subject, but once I began to read, I was totally drawn into the characters and the story line. I love the descriptions and am anxiously awaiting more titles from this author!!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 7, 2011
I once read an account of the ill-fated children's crusade in the middle ages. A boy, Stephen, believed he had received a vision from God. The vision instructed him to gather all the children of Europe and travel to the Holy land. Believing the innocent hearts of children would defeat the enemy and restore Jerusalem to the Christians, thousands of children traveled across Europe in 1212 with the zeal for this cause. Caron Guillo in her novel An Uncommon Crusade draws from the historical record and her own imagination to bring us this story. Elizabeth, Hugo and Simon are teens who have joined the crusade for various reasons. We travel with them as they care for the children and each one faces their own demons. Growing to adulthood with the consequences of joining this doomed crusade changes their lives forever. Caron paints a believable picture of the time period. The setting may be unfamiliar but the age old story of forgiveness and surrender are not. When I wasn't reading An Uncommon Crusade, I was thinking about the story. That makes it a five star book for me.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted April 6, 2011
I first encountered Caron Guillo's excerpt as an excerpt in the 2008 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Awards Contest. The story of Elisabeth, a young German girl, struggling to deliver a child gotten on her by rape broke my heart. When a group of children passed her village, Elisabeth's mother urged her to join. Her step-father was contemplating selling her off somehow and Elisabeth believed that going to the Holy Lands was her only hope of redemption for her 'sins.'
She encounters two fellow crusaders, Simon, who was taken to a monastery and ran away with partial copies of the Holy Texts in his possession. These were writ by his own hand at peril of his life. And Hugo, a large young man who too painfully reminds Elisabeth of her attacker. The three of them form an uneasy alliance and attempt to bring some order to the chaotic camp of youngsters who are following Nicolas of Cologne.
At Genoa, when Nicolas's promise to part the sea for them to pass fails, the three travel on to Marseilles where they use Simon's texts to purchase passage across the sea from merchants. Hugo is 'drafted' into soldiery, Simon and Elisabeth are sold as slaves to the very Muslims they came to fight.
While the Children's Crusades are not well documented if they are not legend, the stories of these three young people are beautifully told and hold lessons which have value and strength for today.
Rebecca Kyle, April 2011
Posted February 18, 2011
Character -- for me to really enjoy a book I must feel as if I'm there, shoulder to shoulder with the characters. I must feel like I truly know the characters, the good and the bad. Nobody wants to spend time with someone who's perfect. Realistic flaws and secondary motivations are often the richest ingredients in a well rendered character. I must feel compelled to root them own, groan when they do the wrong thing, and I expect a certain sadness when I've turned the last page, as if I'm bidding a fond friend farewell.
Caron Guillo gave me all that in the three main characters of this novel, and I can think of no higher compliment to pay an author.
Posted January 15, 2011
Posted January 9, 2011
I just finished reading Caron Guillo's "An Uncommon Crusade". Caron really made the children's crusades of 1212 come alive for me! The depth of her characters, the authenticity of the period, the way I was carried along by the story - I could not put it down. I highly recommend this amazing book to you. I can't wait for your next book, Caron!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.